Internists can assume a greater role in the provision of health care to adolescents. Adding an understanding of adolescent development to the skills and knowledge already possessed by internists will allow internists to interact more comfortably and effectively with adolescent patients. Learning about specific areas of importance such as adolescent morbidity and mortality, consent and confidentiality, interviewing techniques, and preventive health care will further enhance the internist's knowledge regarding adolescent health. There are numerous resources available to help internists care for adolescent patients.
Sexual Maturity Rating. A, Male genital and pubic hair development. Rating for hair and genital development can differ in a typical boy at any given time as pubic hair and genitalia do not necessarily develop at the same rate. B, Female pubic hair development. C, Female breast development (sex maturity rating 1 not shown; prepubertal, elevations of papilla only). Reprinted with permission from Patient Care.26 Illustrations by Paul J. Singh-Roy.
Preventive health services by age and procedure. Reprinted with permission from AMA Guidelines for Adolescent Preventive Services (GAPS): Recommendations and Rationale.9 BMI indicates body mass index; TB, tuberculosis; GC, gonococci; HPV, human papilloma virus; HIV, human immunodeficiency syndrome; MMR, measles, mumps, and rubella; Td, tetanus-diphtheria toxoids; and Hep, hepatitis.
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